August is a month full of festivals, fairs, outdoor concerts, movie nights, and lots of great outdoor family-friendly fun. Enjoy a free concert and festival in Coquitlam, watch dragon boaters race in Steveston, or have fun with lawn games and groovy summer music at VanDusen Botanical Gardens. There’s the always fun Abbotsford Air Show, drive in movies in Richmond, and an awesome car show in Harrison. Take a look at our round up and start planning some memorable family fun. If you like learning about great family-friendly activities happening in Metro Vancouver, make sure you sign up to receive our weekly emails.
Festivals & Fairs
Harmony Arts Festival
Friday, August 4th – Sunday, August 14th, various times, West Vancouver waterfront from Ambleside Park to John Lawson Park, West Vancouver
The family-friendly Harmony Arts Festival is 10-day open-air celebration of art, music and food along the waterfront in West Vancouver. Enjoy kids art workshops, art exhibitions, concerts and family-oriented activities. There is plenty of family fun for children of all ages. The location is perfect for children with so much to see and do along the waterfront and close to John Lawson Park.
Friday, August 4th – Sunday, August 6th, Abbotsford Exhibition Park, 32470 Haida Drive, Abbotsford
Spend the long weekend at the fair! Check out the rodeo, church wagon races, lumberjack shows, demolition derby, pig races, and many other great shows and entertainment. Then have fun with midway rides and games, enjoy fair food, and have fun with the family.
Friday, August 11th – Sunday, August 13th, Chilliwack Heritage Park, 7590 Lickman Road, Chilliwack
It’s time again for the Chilliwack Fair – the second oldest fair in BC. Come on down and join the community for a fun weekend of pie contests, 4H animal displays, great concerts, agricultural demos, magic shows, tractor pull, and a lot more fun!
Kaleidoscope Arts Festival
Saturday, August 12th, 2 pm – 10 pm, Town Centre Park, 1299 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam
B.C.’s beloved rocker, Bif Naked, takes the outdoor stage as the headlining act to this highly anticipated, full-day arts festival on Saturday, Aug. 12 (from 2-10 p.m.). The musical lineup also features jazz/pop singer-songwriter Jennifer Hayes, West My Friend, Derrival, and The Matinée. Other festival highlights include dancers, circus performers, storytellers, artists, an artisans market, kids’ activities, local food trucks and craft beer. Admission is free and it’s located at Town Centre Park, 1299 Pinetree Way, at Lafarge Lake-Douglas SkyTrain station.
Steveston Dragon Boat Festival
Saturday, August 26th, between Britannia Shipyard and Imperial Landing, Steveston, Richmond
Find a good spot on Steveston boardwalk, and watch the teams paddle their dragon boats on the river. Enjoy live music from the World Beat Stage, visit kids’ tent for crafts and other activities, and enjoy the fresh air on the shore. There will be a marketplace and food vendors as well.
Sounds of Summer Music Series
Wednesdays, June 28th – August 30th, various parks across the City of Surrey
From Canadiana to sitar and tabla, celebrate different genres and music from around the world during Surrey’s free Sounds of Summer concert series. The opening night and the grand finale will feature Canada 150 celebrations. Be sure to bring your folding chairs, blankets, and picnic baskets to fully enjoy all the performances. Please note all pets must be on leash and some garden locations do not permit pets, except service dogs.
Music at the Cannery
Fridays, July 7th – August 25th, Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site, Richmond
The Cannery’s annual summertime evening concert series returns July 7 to August 25! Join us every Friday night for an evening of music. Each week will feature a different musical act, catering to a wide range of musical tastes, from blues, jazz, folk and more!
FREE Summer Sessions Concerts
Saturday nights, July 8th – August 26th, 7 pm – 10 pm, The Shipyards, North Vancouver
The City’s FREE Summer Sessions is back for another year with concerts every Saturday night from July 8the to August 26th at The Shipyards. This year’s line-up is guaranteed to get you on your feet and dancing up a storm. So bring your friends, a lawn chair, enjoy the beverage garden and dance the night away. This year there will be food trucks and of course local artisans and artist stalls to browse.
Social Sundays at VanDusen
Sundays in August, 3 pm – 5:30 pm, VanDusen Botanical Garden, 5251 Oak Street, Vancouver
Pack a blanket and bring your friends to VanDusen Botanical Garden for Social Sundays this August! The line-up of summer sounds, signature cocktails, and lawn games will get you grooving on Sunday afternoons from 3:00 pm to 5:30 pm. Live music and activities are included free with garden admission. Truffles café will be in the garden serving hot roast sandwiches, salads, macarons, juices, wine, beer, and a signature garden cocktail! This is an all ages event, but ID is required for liquor purchase.
Free Outdoor Movies in Stanley Park
Tuesdays, July 4th – August 22nd, Second Beach, Stanley Park, Vancouver
Movies are shown every Tuesday night in July and August (weather permitting) at Second Beach in Stanley Park. All movies start after Sunset. Please come early for best lawn seating selection. This year you can enjoy The LEGO Batman Movie, Toy Story, Beauty and the Beast and more!
Starlight Theatre Drive-In Movie Series at Lansdowne Centre
Wednesdays, July 5th – August 30th, 9:30 pm, Lansdowne Centre, 5300 No. 3 Road, Richmond
Enjoy FREE outdoor drive-in movies at Lansdowne Centre every Wednesday night in July & August. Movies start when the sun goes down at approx. 9:30pm.
Outdoor Summer Movie Series 2017
Fridays, July 7th – August 25th, Queen’s Park Stadium, New Westminster
Once again, the City has partnered with Derrick Thornhill, Park Georgia Realty and G&F Financial Group, to offer eight family friendly outdoor movies this summer. Gather family, friends, blankets and lawn chairs and join us on Friday nights for a movie under the stars. The Hyack Football Team will host a concession and the Stadium doors open at 7:00 pm with movies beginning at dusk (approximately 9:00 pm).
Outdoor Movie Nights in Cloverdale
Fridays, July 7th – August 25th, Don Christian Recreation Centre and Katzie Elementary School, Cloverdale
Outdoor movie nights in Cloverdale are back for the summer! Bring your family and join us for a free, movie night every Friday. Movie location alternates between Don Christian Rec Centre and Katzie Elementary School. Don’t forget your chairs, blankets and snacks! Activities start at 8 pm and movies start at dusk. Please note: these events are weather permitting. If it looks like it may rain, please call Cloverdale Recreation Centre at 604-598-7960.
Honda Celebration of Light 2017
Saturday, July 29th; Wednesday, August 2nd & Saturday, August 5th, 2 pm, English Bay Beach, Vancouver, Cost: Free
Honda Celebration of Light isn’t just about the fireworks! There are live music concerts starting early in the afternoon on each of the fireworks nights. So pack your blanket and a picnic, and come early to enjoy the sun, music and fun, and finally the fireworks when the sun goes down. English Bay Beach does get crowded – other great viewing spots are the Stanley Park seawall closer to English Bay, Vanier Park, or Kitsilano Beach.
Saturday, August 5th – Monday, August 7th, 10 am – 5 pm, Fort Langley National Historic Site, 23433 Mavis Ave, Langley
Explore the encampment of Hudson’s Bay Company workers, Indigenous traders, Royal Engineers, Metis trappers and more as they swap stories, play music, and show off traditional skills. The weekend features many re-enactors from around the area dressed in period costume. Don’t miss the “Arrival of the Fur Brigades” canoe re-enactment with a Kwantlen welcome at the river at 1 p.m. on August 7.
Harrison Hot Springs Lakefront Car Show
Saturday, August 26th, 10 am – 4 pm, Harrison Hot Springs, Cost: free!
Come out and enjoy a day strolling through cars from all eras, with the backdrop of the beautiful village and lake of Harrison Hot Springs. No entrance fee, no registration fee. Registration starts at 8am. Opens to the public at 10:00 am to 4pm. There are numerous door prizes up for grabs!
Abbotsford International Airshow
Friday, August 11th – Sunday, August 13th, Abbotsford International Airport, 1595 Townline Road, Abbotsford, Cost: Varies, see website for details
Come and see the stunning aerial acrobatics, check out the ground displays, and be awed by what you see! This event is always a kid-pleaser!
The Fair at the PNE
Saturday, August 19th – Monday, September 4th, closed on August 21st & 28th, 11 am – 11 pm, PNE Grounds, 2901 East Hastings Street, Vancouver
Summer just wouldn’t be the same without The Fair. From Superdogs to spinning rides, The Fair is full of fun for the whole family. Check the website and make a plan – it’s just about impossible to see everything in a day. But whenever you go, don’t forget to sample some of those mini donuts!
Plays & Shows
Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival
June 1st – September 23rd, Vanier Park, Vancouver
Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival’s 28th season runs from June 1 to September 23, 2017 in modern theatre tents in Vancouver’s waterfront Vanier Park. The stylish romantic comedy Much Ado About Nothing, directed by John Murphy (Measure For Measure, 2013), opens the season on the BMO Mainstage. It plays in repertory with a classic staging of The Winter’s Tale, a moving and magical drama directed by Dean Paul Gibson (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 2014). On the Howard Family Stage, the thought-provoking classic, The Merchant of Venice, (director, Nigel Shawn Williams), alternates with a light-hearted romantic drama, The Two Gentlemen of Verona (director, Scott Bellis). Tickets and information: bardonthebeach.org
Theatre Under the Stars
Wednesday, July 7th – Saturday, August 19th, Malkin Bowl, Stanley Park, Vancouver
Each year TUTS produces two different musical shows that alternate performance nights throughout the summer. This years’ summer line-up includes Mary Poppins and The Drowsy Chaperone. So whether you want to tap your feet to the musical styling of everyone’s favourite nanny or giggle along with the hilarious Man in Chair, TUTS is the perfect way to get your kiddos hooked on theatre. We guarantee you’ll leave the show with a few new tunes to hum in your head and a kiddo who has newly found musical theatre aspirations.
Don’t forget to check out our list of 100 low-cost and free activities to do with you family this summer and our list of must-do summer activities for Metro Vancouver families.
We hope this big giant list has inspired you and your family to get out and enjoy everything Metro Vancouver has to offer in August! For more great family fun make sure to join our mailing list to receive weekly Metro Vancouver events right in your inbox.
By: Michelle Hughes